Root Beer Jelly – Winter Canning

Jelly 017 This last summer and fall I was a canning fool and loved every minute of it. I squeezed in every recipe I could using all of the available produce around me. Even though we are now in the depths of winter up here in New England, I don’t feel that’s any reason for me to stop!
Last fall I began setting aside recipes I had or found that didn’t use produce (I admit, it just doesn’t feel right to me to not use fresh, local fruits and veggies to can with).
I came up with a good collection of recipes to use during the long winter months so I could keep the canning momentum going.
Winter is also a great time to try out recipes like these instead of when your buried in the bounty of the growing season!
This is a very simple recipe that you can really customize. This recipe uses Root Beer as the soda of choice, but feel free to substitute your favorite flavor!

Root Beer (Soda) Jelly
Yields 3
A very simple homemade jelly using your favorite soda.
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
  1. 1 12oz Bottle of Root Beer (or soda of choice)
  2. 1 3oz packet Liquid Pectin (Do not use powdered pectin. It will not set.)
  3. 3 Cups Sugar
  1. Place jars in canner and heat water to boiling.
  2. Place lids in small pan and heat, but do not boil.
  3. In large pot, combine root beer and sugar. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Let boil for 1 full minute. Add pectin and bring to full roiling boil (cannot stir down the boil). Continue to stir constantly. After 1 full minute at roiling boil, remove from heat.
  4. Remove jars from canner and fill, leaving a quarter of an inch headspace. Remove any air bubbles in the jar and wipe rims clean.
  5. Affix lids and rings to jars, making sure they are "fingertip tight" and place in canner. Bring water back to a boil and process for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and then let sit for 5 minutes before removing from pot.
  6. Let cool for 24 hours without moving. Then you jam is done. Time to enjoy!
From the Garden Table



27 Responses

  1. Pingback: Wine Jelly-More winter canning | From the Garden Table

  2. I have always wanted to try canning but have never had the courage.. blame it on too many years of food service training making me paranoid. Maybe this year will be the year because we always have a garden and I always want to make it last as long as possible. Thanks for sharing with us at LOBS!!

    • Hi Kristen,
      Thanks for stopping by! I whole-heartedly encourage you to give it a shot! Once you get a couple of times under your belt, you’ll realize there it’s not so scary. (Believe me I felt the same way at first too!)

  3. No way, no way…. root beer jelly? First of all, that’s my favourite drink. Secondly, it simply cannot be that easy to make… I am in such disbelief that I am obligated to make a batch now!

  4. i see recipes that call for hot water bath canning and boiling water bath. are they the same or different and why please

    • Hi Sharron, They are both different names for the same thing. I don’t know why people refer to it differently, I guess it’s just what you first learned. Both refer to the process of preserving canned goods in a very large pot of boiling water. Hope that helps!

  5. Thank you for sharing your recipe. I have my ingredients and plan to make tomorrow. I have also bought orange creme soda to try.
    Couple questions first, how do you go about doubling and second, how do you use the root beer jelly? I am experimenting to give as gifts this holiday season and just in case someone may ask.

    • Hi Kimberly, It’s very easy to double. All that you need to do is follow the exact same steps with X2 of the ingredients. I usually get 6 from a double batch. Orange Creme soda sounds yummy! I also make this with Maple cream soda. You can use this the same way you use any jelly. My son and husband live it on PB&J’s. :)

  6. I made this recipe and strictly followed it to the t. 9 hours later, my jars are just filled with barely thickened rootbeer. Again, I did what you said to do. Where could I have gone wrong?

    • Hi Jason,
      First, let them sit for the full 24 hours, undisturbed, sometimes it can be tricky with the liquid pectin. Also after setting the jelly can be deceptive, as you move it around it will shift away from the sides but still be a solid jelly. I’ve actually opened up sealed jars before just to check that it has set. Good luck and let me know how it turns out! -Karen

  7. I made my first jelly today! Now I’m hooked! I’m looking for unique recipes for Christmas presents and will be making this Rootbeer jelly by the end of the week! Thanks for sharing!

  8. My question is:
    1 when I place the filled jars into the hot water bath, how full over the rims should the water be?
    Thanks for the recipe, it sounds so yummy! The grand kiddos will love it with home made bread and SunButter :)

  9. OK, at the risk of sounding like a nimrod, what is a canner and is it absolutely necessary? Is there a good redneck way to do it without the canner? Single mom here and low on funds, but I’m dying to try this!

    • Absolutely Julie! Basically all it is a very large pot with a lid. But you have to put something on the bottom so the jars do not sit directly on the bottom of the pot.

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